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<  SWAMI GENERAL FORUM  ~  Supersuckers vs. Blue Oyster Cult

Black Thunder
Posted: Tue Sep 05, 2006 3:18 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 09 Jan 2006 Posts: 77 Location: atlanta, ga
so, this past weekend was the annual Drive-Invasion here in atlanta. it's three days of classic drive-in movies, cheap drinkin, sweat and music at the Starlight Six Drive-in. this year the music headliner on sunday, the climax of the festivites, was Blue Oyster Cult... a band known to play many a chili cookoff and quilting convention here. the penultimate band was the Supersuckers.

now, more than a few folks on this here board have alluded to their waning respect for the boys from tucson via seattle. well here's a little tale of mine from two days ago, just to take the counter side. Supersuckers rocked it. kicked it off with "mudhead", slammed on into everything you expect and want to hear: creepy jackolope eye, luck, sleepy vampire, road worn and weary, dirt roads, dead ends, and dust... but the peak of their set was during a breather/breakdown when eddie asked if the drive-invaders were ready for BOC... he smoothly nodded as the crowd cheered and then came the first few notes of Godzilla, stomping from his bass. Ron picked it up with the lead and eddie began to sing...

"With a purposeful grimace and a terrible sound
He pulls the spitting high tension wires down"

more slurred roaring from the filthy, boozed-up crowd... it was on, now.

then the BOC roadie stomped onto the stage and started yanking on Ron's guitar strap and shouting something in his ear. the music faltered and stopped, the guys in the band looked back, confused; words were exchanged, more guitar yanking by another greaseball roadie, Ron almost got yanked over. eddie started doing a little fist-pumping "put up your dukes dance" at the ridiculousnessocity of the Cult and their crew... the question "so... what, we can't pay tribute to our idols?" was posed to the audience... "should we take the chance?" eddie asked to no one in particular... "yeah, let's risk it. you guys wanna hear Cowboy Song?"

indeed we did.

the Suckers them proceeded to bust into their staple Cowboy Song/Born with a Tail show-stopper... sure, it's nothing new, but it's ALWAYS effin awesome. the cowboy's life is the life for me? i'd rather choose my soul to lose than leave around just one confusing loose desire? c'mon! how can that not pump you up?

the point is, the Supersuckers were more than happy to come down to atlanta and play a stank, rained out drive-in at 5 in the afternoon on a sunday. they had fun, goofed around on stage and rocked the sweaty pants off of the crowd. Blue Oyster Cult, on the other hand, got all prickledey-ass when someone wanted to play one of the three songs of theirs that people were there to hear, caused a rucus, disrupted another band's set, and to cap it off, insisted that the stage be raised three feet higher for their set. we must be one meter taller than all the other bands! i think it might have had something to do with the fact that 3 out of 5 of them were stooped over like Igor. especially the dude on second lead. cat looked like nosferatu with a leather rocker vest and pony-tail. if your peak was thirty years ago and you're playing drive-in festivals and chili cook-offs, don't be prima-donnas. realize that you're basically there for the novelty/goof factor. well, except for that one middle-aged cat with the suede belt-purse and BOC tour shirt. i've never seen someone more exicited to see a band. me?
i spent my last seventeen dollars buying a supersuckers t-shirt; fifteen for the shirt and my last two for the band jar. in return i was awarded a "kick me" sign sketch with eddie's signature under it on the back of my shirt. that's class.

being cool and having fun with the "big name" band pulling a dick move while you're on stage; immediately going to your tent after your set to stand on steamy atlanta asphalt and shake hands and shoot the shit with your fans. that's class.

i went home before BOC played godzilla or don't fear the reaper. i'd seen the original gone in sixty seconds before and i plan on buying Gojira on dvd pretty soon, so no loss on the movies. i came for the free Rollergirl beer and the Suckers. i got what i came for and more.

the Supersuckers may have had their "moment" ten years ago, if you want to think of it that way... for my dollar, though, i'd pay forty to see them tell me to put my middle finger up in the air as high as i can, twenty years from now, than watch BOC at a festival that i rode in a trunk to get into, any day.

adios amen the end.

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alan_cohaul
Posted: Tue Sep 05, 2006 10:08 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 23 Feb 2006 Posts: 1199
That's cool that you had fun. I hate to say it, but I honestly don't know if i'd pay 30 bucks again to see the Supersuckers. The night (after being a fan for about ten years) that I saw 'em on, they were pretty much dead tired. It was disheartening. The sound mix SUCKED, but I was up at the front of the stage in front of the amps, and it should have ripped my ass off, just from their stage volumes. It didn't. Everyone that I knew saw it said the same thing, "it was good....but a disappointment". They had gone through their umpteenth drummer since Dancing Eagle left, and in my mind, the day that "rock n' roll brethren since high school" thing wasn't in the band anymore, they simply haven't been the same.

I think that some fans are more forgiving that they actually are, when the Suckers of ten years ago....hell, even 7 years ago from the "Evil Powers" days, it just can't compare. Though I never saw them live in their "prime", all the video footage, all the records, all the reviews that I saw or read all said the same thing: killer band. Nowadays, it's pretty much hit or miss.

To me, they've gone to the big Gibson in the sky already. I sorta wish they'd just bow out and admit it that they're coasting. And believe me, that's tough as hell for me to say, because they distilled every last innocent stupid rock n' roll dream that I had since I was a kid, up until basically Dancing Eagle left/ got kicked out/ whatever. And that "Live From The Magic Bag" recording (the same time I finally saw 'em, about a month earlier, actually) still reveals what I thought--songs too slow, it sounds like they're fighting against age, or some sort of invisible current. And in defense of them, they are old, hahaa. But for once, I think even they realize that their claims of "the greatest rock n' roll band in the world" aren't ringing that true, deep down in their rock n' roll hearts.
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bettys boy
Posted: Wed Sep 06, 2006 10:16 am Reply with quote
Joined: 03 Nov 2005 Posts: 203 Location: Tacoma, WA
The curtain's falling. Eddie's venting his spleen one last time - at BOC, at Tiger Army, at a world that's passed them (and us) by. Rock and roll records? They ain't sellin' this year.

Eddie Spaghetti's anger is all they've got left, and once that's spent they'll call it quits.

Watching this ugliness puts last Halloween in a much happier light for me.
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alan_cohaul
Posted: Wed Sep 06, 2006 3:13 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 23 Feb 2006 Posts: 1199
That's another thing, and you totally nailed it--Eddie and the band have got increasingly bitter sounding at the whole industry, their own fans (Eddie expressed a concern that he had tons of people on his mailing list, but only a fraction of them bought his solo disc....which I can understand, but that's the nature of the Pareto's law that 20 percent equals 80 percent of results). I keep using Rocket as an example, but there's a band who knew when to pull the plug, and did it with dignity, leaving their fans wanting more. It's not fair that the Suckers never got their due, but hey, if I was to list all the cool bands that never sold what they should or never had a top 40 song or whatever, i'd be here for years listing the injustices.
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bettys boy
Posted: Fri Sep 08, 2006 8:38 am Reply with quote
Joined: 03 Nov 2005 Posts: 203 Location: Tacoma, WA
If only the Supersuckers re-directed half of that anger - and what's left of their reputation - into building up Mid Fi Records to be more than a one-horse stable.

A tip of the hat to our host for showing the world how it's done.
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alan_cohaul
Posted: Fri Sep 08, 2006 10:30 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 23 Feb 2006 Posts: 1199
Yeah, MidFi has been putting out some so-so products. That Devil's Food comp that they put out a year or two back was nowhere near a complete outing (no "Up To The Curb"? No "Thinkin' Out Loud"? No AC/DC covers?). Also, the thing is, they tour non-stop. It's the same thing that burnt the Ramones out--they weakened their draw by playing 200 to 300 dates a year. What the Supersuckers should do---and I consider myself a hardcore fan, and a friend if they'd allow it-- true friends tell friends what they don't wanna hear.

And this friend says that they take some time off, and let their reputation sink in for awhile. It worked for T urbonegro, it could possibly work for them, too. Night after night after night, I can't see them being that excited to play, and that's manifesting itself into the anger that we're talking about here. What i've discerned that this IS their day job, and i've heard numerous allusions from Eddie that "this is the only thing they know how to do". So if they had anything to fall back on, maybe they wouldn't feel the need to consistently weaken their draw, because this is the only thing that pays the bills.

I can't see any discerning, concerned, dedicated fan being excited to see 'em in two to three years.
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bettys boy
Posted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 3:46 am Reply with quote
Joined: 03 Nov 2005 Posts: 203 Location: Tacoma, WA
alan_cohaul wrote:
Yeah, MidFi has been putting out some so-so products. .... What i've discerned that this IS their day job, and i've heard numerous allusions from Eddie that "this is the only thing they know how to do". So if they had anything to fall back on, maybe they wouldn't feel the need to consistently weaken their draw, because this is the only thing that pays the bills.


That's what I was getting at - they DO have one more thing to fall back on, a record label and an ear for good bands. They should be moving to the next phase of their lives, finding and exposing the young and hungry and unheard.

I see that Mark Arm is on the payroll at Sub Pop now.
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alan_cohaul
Posted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 10:37 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 23 Feb 2006 Posts: 1199
I don't think that anything at MidFi (Hangmen, etc) is really close to paying mortgage bills or anything, and the Suckers might benefit mostly from the label as a means for them to get more money per unit. Which means that without them constantly touring, their merch money would probably drastically be reduced, so they're in a catch 22--can't take a rest because that time off is coming directly out of their pockets, as they have nothing else really to pay the bills. See, it's sorta like how a hooker needs crack, so she needs to work, and it's that vicious "need crack to hook, need to hook to get crack", and that, my friends, is where the Supersuckers are at right now.
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supergenius
Posted: Tue Sep 12, 2006 11:26 am Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Dec 2005 Posts: 69 Location: seattle, wa
[quote=

I see that Mark Arm is on the payroll at Sub Pop now.[/quote]

I heard he's the wherehouse manager now, and he hates the wee wee in my face.
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supergenius
Posted: Tue Sep 12, 2006 11:28 am Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Dec 2005 Posts: 69 Location: seattle, wa
By "wee wee in my face" I mean......fuck it.
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